The site and context of a 109 foot high temple shikhar prompts our design. The strategy is to evolve a building which is as INCLUSIVE in spirit and working as the eastern philosophies that will be studied here. Hinduism, Jainism and Buddhism all have been rooted in India over the millennia and shaped our culture; making us unique as people. The common factor of these oldest and most refined religions is INCLUSIVITY – the ability to absorb all nuances of human nature and through clear though and conduct, delivering a true PEACE of mutual coexistence with all creatures and nature on the planet. We, choose to understand this INCLUSIVITY in all our architecture, a means to deliver true meaning to our work through understanding our specificity of context. We are born of this culture of PEACE. The architectural solution we propose, positions the CONSTRUCT of the building as a modern day KUND… A feature that has been an adjunct to temples from the early ages, where the very genesis of life was performed. The spirit of our proposal is to DIG into the earth; create a construct out of BARE BRICK ARCHES… Being a HOMAGE to the EARTH/PRITHVI. The KUND like construct will harness the RAIN water as a true stepped WELL. Pumped, filtered and used for the service of the students. The WIND catches atop the building help ventilate the construct as support to services and fresh air changes. The entire KUND construct, has a stepping surface, this surface becomes a phenomenological traversal of the levels, of time, of finding your own path… Becoming a zone encouraging the INTERFAITH… We see students and teachers meeting, congregating and interacting informally, under the SKY/AAKASH. The mystical universe… We want our building to promote a sense of wonder, a burning passion to learn the essence of these faiths keeping the AGNI of knowledge alive… Buildings with such strong, meaningful purposes as this, where the entire focus is on education, on the spirit of realizations shared by learned souls, need to be vessels of transportation, from darkness to LIGHT, from mere existence to AWARE beings; from seeing the light and progressing to ENLIGHTENMENT. The project is visualized in predominantly two materials – BRICK and CONCRETE. The bricks will be carefully chosen and possibly even collected from older buildings being demolished (recycling in the purest sense). This suggesting a RENEWAL of the old, a sort of REBIRTH of the earthen material. The LIGHT entering through the KUND FAÇADE will be sensed in all its variances at each level, also reflecting off the water contained by the L-shaped Kund. Light will form the central substance of the building invited in, conjured, reflected and even sensed as dark and deep shadows in spaces such as the Asana hall and Shine room. We expect the three dimensional arched arcade structures to reflect and reverberate sound of chants at a pitch and resonance bringing the users closer to the vibrations of the past knowledge they seek to uncover.

Competition, 2015